Region & State

South Arkansas highway to be named for oil tycoon

R. Madison Murphy

A portion of Highway 167 is being dedicated to honor former Arkansas Highway Commissioner Madison Murphy

From the Arkansas Department of Transportation

Nearly 100 miles of Highway 167 from Saline County to Union County will be named the “Madison Murphy Highway,” the Arkansas Department of Transportation announced.

Murphy served on the Arkansas Highway Commission from 2003 to 2013, ending his term as Chairman of the Commission. Murphy has been a staunch advocate for improvements to the Arkansas Highway System, not only for his home region of southern Arkansas but for the entire state.

Murphy has served as chairman of the board of Murphy USA Inc. since its 2013 spin-off from Murphy Oil Corp., where he has been a director since 1993 and serves on the executive committee and chairs the audit committee.

As a highway commissioner, Murphy played a key role in promoting the importance of the 2012 temporary, half-cent sales tax that funded the Connecting Arkansas Program (CAP), one of the largest highway construction programs ever undertaken by ARDOT.

Highway 167, the primary north-south route carrying traffic through the south-central portion of Arkansas, benefited from several widening projects funded by the CAP. Because of Murphy’s advocacy for Highway 167 and the CAP, Highway 167 is now a four-lane connection between South and Central Arkansas, which increases safety and mobility. 

“We owe a debt of gratitude to Madison Murphy for making Highway 167 the major corridor it is today,” said ARDOT Director Lorie Tudor.  “His hard work was not limited to south Arkansas; he helped pave the way for improvements to the entire State Highway System.”

Highway commissioners, ARDOT leadership and local dignitaries will convene Tuesday, September 19 at 1 p.m. in El Dorado, for the dedication event, which will be held at the Arkansas Welcome Center at 3315 Junction City Highway, El Dorado.